Something a little different today!! We have an extra scene. I
love extra scenes!!! I hope yo enjoy this look into Maris :)
This extra scene is a bit of backstory on Calder's sister, Maris. No one’s ever nasty “just because.” Hopefully this will give you a little more insight into her character. I've always felt sorry for Maris...
June 28, 1967
“Don’t look at me like that,” says Nadia.
A very young Maris pulls back, cowering further into the hollow of a sunken log. She twirls her white-blond hair around her index finger. All this time she has been careful not to make a sound, but of course her thoughts betray her. How can she watch her mother slowly dying and be expected to keep her mind quiet?
“Like what?” Maris asks, startled by the sound of her own voice.
Nadia flicks her tail as a warning. “Like you’re disappointed in me.”
Nadia flips and swims away, deeper and farther from the storm that is blowing across Lake Superior–the great Gitche Gumee–and whipping the waves into white capped furies. It is the kind of storm that comes out of nowhere–like the November Witch, except that it’s too early in the season.
Maris watches her mother racing away from her and waits until the last flash of pink disappears into darkness. Only then does she dart out of the log and follow her mother into deeper water. The growing chill ripples along the length of her body, right to the fluke of her onyx-colored tail.
“Forget him. We don’t need him,” Maris calls out to her. “We never did.”
Maris has done everything she can to be good enough for her mother, but she has fallen short. Nadia doesn’t want her. She doesn’t want her other daughters, Pavati and Tallulah, either. She wants a son. Theson. Hancock’s son. As far as Maris knows, her mother always got everything and everyone she ever wanted. She has trained her daughters just as well. But now someone has escaped her.
If Nadia is ashamed, if she worries about showing weakness to her daughters, Maris wants to tell her that they don’t blame her. Maris doesn’t even want a brother.
But the boy, Jason, consumes her mother’s every thought. The loss of him eats at her heart, until she is nothing more than bones and dangerous angles. Even now, knowing that Maris trails close behind, knowing how much her young daughter wants to be consoled, Nadia lets her thoughts go to the boy.
Maris listens to those thoughts. She feeds on those thoughts. She feeds on those thoughts, until her mind roils black like the storm clouds above them.
But then her focus is interrupted by a sailboat cutting through the waves, motoring back to port. The few people on board hurry to lower the main sail. Their voices ring hollow, filtered by the waves, but Maris senses panic in the cadence. The wind changes tack, and the boom swings unexpectedly. There is a woman’s scream and a small splash. The vibration stops Nadia in her path. She turns, then races past Maris toward the choppy surface.
“Jason!” Nadia calls as her son plummets through the black water. Coming home. Coming home at last! He is as soft as a lyric, as small as a single note. But he cannot finish the song of his transformation. He is sinking, a wild scramble of limbs. His heart beats out a syncopated rhythm, slowing steadily.
It’s not Jason. It is someone else’s son. A human boy. Dark haired and thin skinned. His pale arms windmill through the water as the last small rings of air rush from his nose to the surface.
Maris calls to her mother, “No! We don’t need him.”
Nadia doesn’t respond, but Maris’s cries capture her sisters’ interest, and they are quick to come and see their mother save the boy. They will watch. And they will learn. Their thoughts promise Nadia that they will teach the little boy the ways of Gitche Gumee.
Maris listens as the boy’s heart falls silent, then grits her teeth as Nadia places her hands around his chest. After months of living with her mother’s despondency, this new enthusiasm tastes much like bitter herbs. Pavati’s curiosity is a slap in the face. Even Tallulah already loves the boy and, with a burst of light, he is silver tailed just like her.
The boy startles. His eyes are wide. He looks down at himself, then–only briefly–up at the sailboat’s keel, which is struggling to come about.
Maris recoils from her sisters’ excitement. Don’t they understand he is not one of them? He is only a temporary fix for their mother’s misery. What good will he be when her sorrow returns?
And . . . after Nadia is dead and gone, who will be there to hold the fractured family together? It will be Maris, and she never asked for any of this.
All she ever wanted was to be enough.
And clearly, she never will be.
So I was never and probably never will be a huge supporter of Maris but this does clear up why she resents Calder so much.
I am a Minnesota author, writing about mermaid assassins on Lake Superior. My debut YA series begins with LIES BENEATH, coming June 12, 2012 from Random House/Delacorte.
The sequel (DEEP BETRAYAL) is anticipated for March 2013.
Besides writing and reading YA literature, I love all things Irish, romantic movies, beef stroganoff, and Nutella.
If I'm listening to music it's Violent Femmes, The Coronas (awesome band out of Dublin), and Great Big Sea (out of Newfoundland).
Anne has offered up either a Signed PB of Lies Beneath or a Signed HB of
Deep Betrayal (winners choice)!! Good Luck (kinda jealous guys!)